Bangkok, Thailand, August 15, 2009 – In a dazzling performance somewhere near their best, the fist-pumping USA showed no mercy to Puerto Rico by crushing the lower-ranked rivals in straight set 25-16 25-18 25-22 in their second match in the 2009 World Grand Prix preliminaries Pool I here.
The USA, FIVB world ranked No.2 and silver medalists at the last year’s Beijing Olympics, already beat debutantes Puerto Rico 3-2 in their first week Pool A in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Against the old foes, the USA played without much pressure. They started an attack right from the whistle. With devastating southpaw Nancy Metcalf attacking fiercely at the net, the USA led all the way in the first set.
Taking the commanding 14-8 lead, the USA continued their superb form. They toughened up their defence, allowing the Puerto Ricans tough times scoring. The USA captured the first set 25-16 with ease.
Their confidence boosted following the first-set win, the USA rolled on their supremacy in the second set. Jordan Larson produced powerful mid-court spikes and Metcalf punctured the rivals’ defence with her deadly smashes to help the USA lead initially 23-15. Gallant Puerto Rico regained their composure to win three straight points and come close at 18-23. However, to make short work of the rivals, the USA marched on to win the set 25-18, again without much trouble.
The third set was close from the beginning. Puerto Rico tried hard to match the USA competitively. They chased from trailing 15-18 to tie the score at 18-18. However, the USA were just unbeatable to win the hard-fought set 25-22 and the match.